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Vast Resources share price spiked this week after a long period of inactivity when the company said that it made significant strides in production at its three key sites in Romania and Zimbabwe.

Presenting its third quarter production update on 16 October, Vast Resources said it saw record production at its Manaila polymetallic mine in Romania and the Pickstone-Peerless gold mine in Zimbabwe.

At the Manaila mine in Romania, which produces copper, silver, gold, lead and zinc, copper concentrate production rose by 31% although the grade dropped slightly. This is good news for the mining company as copper prices have risen by 27% since the beginning of the year and are now trading at around $7,000/t, the highest level in three years.

The price of the other industrial metals has also increased significantly over the last 12 months.

According to Vast Resources’ chief executive Andrew Prelea the mine is currently breaking even and in some months generating profit, but a processing plant being built on the site which is due to start operating shortly is expected to cut costs by 25%, helping Manaila to generate significant profits.

Vast Resources’ other operation in Romania, the Baita Plai copper-silver-lead-zinc mine has also made strides by acquiring a Romanian association licence. This is now a single step away from final approval to operate the mine, currently on care and maintenance, and Vast Resources expects to start work underground before Christmas.

The mine, which had been operational in the past, although relatively small in terms of resources, has all the necessary infrastructure in place such as underground shafts and railway. Once all the paperwork is in place it will be possible to start production at Baita Plai with minimal investment.

At its Pickstone-Peerless gold mine in Zimbabwe Vast Resources is currently producing 20,000t of gold oxide a month but a new sulphide plant which is due to start operating shortly will increase monthly output to 35,000t. The company’s management is confident that current upgrades at all three mines will be completed before the end of the year and will lead to significantly higher production and profitability in 2018.

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Please note this article does not constitute investment advice. Investors are encouraged to do their own research beforehand or consult a professional advisor.

Vanya Dragomanovich

Vanya Dragomanovich

Vanya is an award-winning financial journalist who has worked in both television and newswires. She spent over 10 years at Dow Jones covering commodity markets, including metals, coffee, cocoa and oil. She also reported from the floor of the London Metals Exchange, and appeared on CNBC to discuss international metals markets. Since then she has written for several leading financial publications, including serving as commodities editor for FTSE Global Markets.

Vanya continues to cover international commodities markets globally, specialising in particular on metals and alternative energy. She is also the author of a book on CFD trading.

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